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GrandyOats has managed something noteworthy in Maine – creating a successful organic food business worthy of the 2013 Producer of the Year Award by the Maine Grocers Association and Food Producers Alliance while maintaining its organic and sustainability values. Nat Pierce and Aaron Anker, both 42 with families, are happy with their partnership in the unique business of creating more than 40 scrumptious, 100 percent organic granolas and trail mixes sold around the country. Read the article.

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Steve TanguaySearsport Shores Ocean Campground in Searsport, Maine, doesn’t have paved roads, TV, streetlights or video games. Nor swimming pools, water parks or miniature golf. The owners haven’t clear-cut the 40-acre site, with its quarter acre of ocean frontage, but instead have left well-spaced, huge pines and 200-plus-year-old oaks that create dappled shade and a lightly enveloping canopy.

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Ben Marcus and Taryn HammerTaryn Hammer and Ben Marcus opened the doors of their Sheepscot General at Uncas Farms in Whitefield, Maine, in 2011 after a winter spent remodeling an already storied space. “The farm is way older than we are,” says Marcus, who grew up in Whitefield and has watched the evolution of the building housing their storefront as well as the encircling farmland.

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Jessica ShepardImagine a harborside park where you could stroll through tents overflowing with produce grown by your favorite local farmers. Add to that the smell of pizza and wood smoke. Imagine these pizzas are made with market-procured toppings, fresh dough and served hot from a stunning trailer-mounted wood-fired oven. Sound amazing? It is – and it is a reality at three Maine farmers’ markets. The Uproot Pie Company began selling its “wood-fired pizzas, bagels and rustic treats on the move” last summer and is now in its second successful season.

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Steve CookFounded in 1998, when Steve Cook closed his restaurant in Florida and moved back home, Maine Sea Salt Company began in the aisle of a health food store. This is where Cook first noticed high-end “gourmet” salts, and things suddenly fell into place.

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Many years ago, Ellis Percy tried to convince Common Ground Country Fair food vendors to offer a hot drink in addition to the cider already at the Fair. After repeating the suggestion to no avail for about four years, he decided to come up with a drink himself.

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When Peggy Schuler started out in the business of selling organic and natural food in the early 1970s, officials in Maine eyed some of her store’s health items with suspicion. “The health department said we couldn’t have open bins for grains,” Schuler says. “There was a lot of initial discrimination and disbelieving.”

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